Happy Hat for my son.....

My son won't wear winter clothing... to be fair he runs "hot," always warm, complaining about the heat.

So getting a winter coat and hat on him, close to impossible.  We figured out a very light weight coat that is warm does work... and now we have a HAT!!!! 

Steve Jobs was an idol of his....Apple Computer/Apple Ipod etc are an obsession as well.  He listens to the webcasts every quarter and know the specs of all the machines...So a hat with an apple logo should work, no?

The idea started from a graph of the apple I found on Ravelry.  In the beekeepers quilt group,"wedewschool" had suggested it to the group of knitters. I saved the page and let it simmer on the back burner of my mind...

My rocker daughter had asked for a hat featuring Sonic Youth, as soon as that was done, on to the hat for the Techie son....

Click for Pattern Apple Hat 2011

Slipped Rib Blanket for baby or not.

I am giddy, learning to make PDFs has blown me away, here is a long time promised pattern.  This project is inspired by Stephen West Free pattern.....Slipped Rib Scarf  show here in two colors
Slipped Rib designed by Stephen West
  

The secret of the slipped rib, is to line up the slips and the knits...

Right side-row 1: Knit 1 slip 1 (With yarn in front)
Wrong side row 2: Knit All(in the round, flat knitting you Purl all!)


I was happily knitting a baby blanket for a friend when alas my daughter who will leave for college in less than 20 months now...cast an eye on it... and stated that she wanted it...I had 3 or 4 skeins of the lovely Malabrigo Rios wound and had knitted 2 of them....

Clearly this would not be big enough for a "end of dorm room bed" blankie for her.. so I was on a hunt... more lovely Rios in Arco Iris, (rainbow).  In Maine I found one, and more around the NY area as well..... at 11 I finally stopped... and called it a blanket..
PDF of Slipped Rib Blanket CLICK HERE



Rocker Hat and a PDF!!!!

Walking down the streets of the city during holiday time, you see many people wearing all kinds of hats scarves etc....  I mentioned to my daughters that if they see anything they would like, I could knit it for them.  You would think they might know this by now.....

My " rock n roll" daughter sheepishly looked at me and said, I saw a really complicated thing that I want, but I am not sure you can make it.....HA! 36 hours later done to much praise, praise from a 17 year old??!?!?

And I have finally joined the 21 century, I can make a pdf.  I didnt know that you can just SAVE as PDF in microsoft products... but you can...so voila!

For this hat you need 4 colors of basic worsted yarn....I used Cascade 220.  70 yards for the brim, 50 for the background(yellow here) and 30 yards for each of the trims.....

Needles, #4 and #5 and some dpns for the very top....a needle to pull the stitches through the final 10 stitches....and pom pom "materials...Pom Pom instructions


I like to knit hats on small needles to make it WARM and snuggly......Gauge 5/inch on 5 in stockinette....

Click here for The Rocker Hat PDF

 My very first PDF!


The new hat.....or is it?

Last year on a family getaway my son saw young men wearing knitted! tubes of yarn rather than a boring hat,  he had to have one. His was the Inter Milan branded version, we bought from a street vendor and not surprisingly it fell apart after wearing it everyday for 3 months.....

I promised that I would make him one this year... and here it is.....mostly stockinette, 
Cast on (hat amount:18 inches x your gauge)
with MC and CC2  long tail style,make slip knot with both 
do your long tail cast on
 
*MC
Row 1 knit  
Row 2  k1 p1
Row 3 knit 
CC 
Row 4 knit around*

Would do at least 12 inches for teenager and better is about 14 inches!

Icord bind off with CC2:

This casting off which I love... makes the top look more "finished" 
 
On your left side needle with  your stitches waiting- you cable cast on 3 more(what ever size I cord you would like) stitches. 

*K2, K2tbl(k2 thru back loops), replace 3 stitches from right to left needle*
 repeat until end.. bind off last 3...

THIS CAN BE KNITTED IN THE ROUND OR FLAT!!!

Red White and blue.. but mostly blue... This yarn is a lovely "plied worsted" by Tanis I got for him this past summer in Montreal during our Hurricane Irene trip.  The man I bought it from at Mouline told me this is the same base yarn as MadTosh Vintage and Sweet Georgia Worsted.  He appears to be right as when I got home I did check and they all look pretty similar in gauge and weight. 3 lovely dyers and quite different to be sure.. but some great yarn!

In any event a  tube hat is basically a hat that you dont ever decrease...or a narrow cowl that is quite long...

so cast on your favorite hat and knit forever...or until it droops appropriately over the back of your head until your neck!

This one was made for my sons teacher Budd, who has some lovely dred-locks.  This in blue white and orange, the school colors with his name in intarsia..
would be easier to do overstitch by the way..next time I will.. Intarsia in the round is a bit of a pain.. learned from the Elizabeth Zimmerman DVD: A Knitting Glossary DVD  (highly recommended) She and Meg Swanson sit and knit all kinds of strange things, cast ons and cast offs as well.....

The dark blue is seed stitch, the white/orange stockinette.





This version is 2 strands of TOSH DK merino,2 strands held together, seed stitch, Icord bind off.

His sister agreed to pose for this.. but I do think some good winter photos are in order... Will add soon! Wanted to get this posted before Thanksgiving... This fall the NY Times showed this look as the "new" thing...


Rhinebeck 2011

Rhinebeck 2011-Celebrate Wool!!!!
This was my second trip or should I say pilgrimage to The Annual New York State Sheep and Wool Festival, better known as Rhinebeck. Last year, my first time was a one day run around for me.  When I got home I knew I had loved seeing all the yarn and parade of finished objects but it was clear that I hadn't soaked in all that was offered.  Vowing to return for the entire weekend to fully experience this celebration of Wool, I literally counted the months, then days, then hours until October 15th.  

Finally, Saturday morning ! I was awake before the alarm clock rang at 6am.  Popped up out of bed and went out to the couch to wake Betty Balcomb who had traveled from LA for the festival.  We met Leslie G and Elizabeth, two other yarn enthusiasts at the garage, threw our overnight bags in the back, grabbed some car knitting and we were off.  At 9:05 we parked the car in the large grassy lot directly next to the back gate and in we went, all resplendent in our knitted objects. It was cool clear but windy. This suited me quite well as I was decked out in the Earth and Sky shawl designed by Stephen West, and my Modern poncho, mittens and headband all knit in Tart MadelineTosh Merino,  

Once inside the Fairgrounds I knew exactly where to go, as I had been stalking both Ravelry and the S&W website to find all the information - activities, animals and competitions, book signing schedules and map.  I really wanted this year to be about enjoying the entire festival, looking touching inhaling it all. Over this summer I took a great class on Photographing your Knitting with Gale Zucker hosted by Kay Gardiner and I wanted to create a memory book of this weekend. My only yarn related goal was to buy one sweaters(or ponchos)worth of yarn from an independent dyer, Sanguine Gryphon.  This proved to be a bit more difficult than anticipated as many others had the same exact goal.  The line to pay was out the door up the hill and back around down the fence, about 100 minutes to wait to pay for said yarn.
Sanguine Gyrphon Flash Mob to pay
 But once this was done, I was free to wonder around, touch feel and photograph everything. While in the queue to pay we were visited by Sooze and other yarn friends, including Rhinebeck Bingo players. The only other time I waited for such an extended time was to watch a taping of a Jon Stewart Daily show.  Both were worth it which is a nice thing to be able to say


Next up was the weekends food-Lamb hot dogs, Lamb Chorizo, baked potato with cheese, maple flavored Cotton Candy, Fudge, Kettle Corn, 1/2 sour pickles and fresh picked apples.  As I am allergic to wheat I had to skip some of the more famous Festival food including the apple crisp, deep fried pickles, artichokes and shepards pies. I didn't hear a soul complaining about the food, lots of great choices locally sourced/made, fresh and delicious. Some of the food I bought, fudge, popcorn, cotton candy did make it home for my family as a gift, for allowing me a moms weekend away. 

Once we had a nice lunch back to wandering around.  The book tent was full of the "knitterati", the Yarn Harlot was sighted, Stephen West, Ann Weaver and our local knitter Kay Gardiner of Mason Dixon Knitting with her blogging partner Ann Shayne.  I picked up a great book as a gift for my crafty 17 year old daughter called Craft Activism, by photographer Gale Zucker. Crafting that makes a difference, for charity, for a political statement or even just to be green. (Kay Gardiner has a great project in this book.)  

The animals who generate the wool were everywhere, marching in parades, jumping over ropes, or just hanging out in their pens- bunnies, goats, alpaca, llama and of course the sheep. I heard an alpaca humming happily, like my mom while she was cooking dinner back when I was a kid. The best part of the animals for me was the little children who were sheparding them around.  You would see a 6 year old girl pulling her alpaca (or llama)in the the barn for it show time.  Very sweet.

There were enormous amounts of things for sale that are not wool or fiber.  Spinning wheels, card, combers, spindles, weaving looms, shuttles, needles, hooks , rug punches are just a few of the pieces of equipment we spotted. There were bag handles, buttons, frog hooks and lots of adornments for use in finishing your objects as well.

Yarn Bowl
One debate I had with myself was regarding the yarn bowl.  It is a lovely piece of pottery tin or wood with a slot to pull your yarn through so it doesn't roll away.  I finally decided no as my dog Meringue was more likely to break it, I just wasn't sure I would use it. It would be a great gift(hint to husband) and I did get the website information.  There were many finished objects for sale as well, felted hats, woven jackets, blankets, rugs, knitting humor paintings, felted purses, knitted sock and mittens jackets & sweaters too.  

By the end of Saturday my back was in poor shape from dragging around my camera. This did surprise me a bit, I guess I have to head back to the gym to strengthen my muscles for next year.   That evening we had some great food at a local roadside "pub", did some knitting and reviewed the day’s photos then happily off to sleep.  Someone at Rhinebeck was thinking when they made the Sunday opening time at 10am that extra sleep was just what we all needed.  Day two was great, easy in easy out, as we parked at the side gate by Mulberry Street.  Wandering around, we found Koi ponds and flower gardens and an antique dealer. Today we saw  the leapin llama  contest which was a high point(no pun intended),one of the llamas was shaved like a poodle show dog and acted like one too. 

The luxury of having two days is getting to spend time and hang out which I did, with my photo class buddies Kay Gardiner and Gale Zucker who were at the book signing table.  It was now time to pick up the heavy things, 3 bars of soap and a scented candle and head back home.  On the way out we caught the Canine Frisbee demonstration(no pun there either!)  

During this wonderful weekend we ran into many of our other woolie friends, Jennifer, Karen, Ruth, Kim, Tracy, Sylvia, Kim, Amanda, Michelle , Melissa, Joyce, Andrea, Louise, Barbara, Carol, Heidi, Linda, Phyllis &  Maddy.  Hanging out with the yarn community is a joy and privilege.  I feel so lucky to have met you all, xo-Sara



Oh Canada, Poutine, Sideways Scarf, Gluten Free Crepes,Pizza & Pasta


This was a great summer,the whole lot of us traveled up to Quebec City and Montreal.  

Fun Yarns a surprisingly fair(not cheap) currency and good eating, We started in Quebec City where we feasted on GLUTEN FREE Steak Frites at Entrecote St Jean. AFter the traditional sightseeing, I did jump on the city bus and travel to the one yarn store near the old city, La Dauphine where I bought one skein of lovely Misti Alpaca Hand Painted worsted for a shawl for work.  Another Gluten free menu at restaurant, Lapin Saute which had a 5foot tall carrot shaped pepper grinder... will track down photo!
 
Next off to our Hurricane Irene lengthened visit to Montreal. Again great gluten free food, Zero8, a pun in french..zerohuit(sounds like zerowheat) a restaurant that has none of 8 allergens including gluten.  We had pasta and poutine and loads of fun.....PizzaPizza is a chain in Canada that serves GF crusts freshly rebaked... call ahead. one time we were happy 2nd visit, no gf crust left....At the Atwater Market they serve GF crepes.... make sure they clean the pan..but seriously YUM! I found this market after a long visit at Mouline, a lovely yarn store in Montreal. Raveler Pleski sent me to the market...quite a treat.. Also found Tanis yarn there, a lovely worsted weight yarn hand dyed....and Voila... A scarf for my son was born.  He wanted one with big blue stripes small gray stripes and red on the ends....





Sideways Scarf with ridges….

Needed: Long Circular needle to get gauge…(not that important) 4.5 sts to inch and 4 garter ridges.
 and 6 bobbins for Accent Color and needle to weave in ends....

Special Cast On… This is a version of a long tail cast on, Take your Contrast Color(CC-gray), and your Main Color(MC-blue)  hold the two strands together and make a slip knot and put that on your needle(this is stitch 1).  The CC will be over your thumb and the  MC will be on your index finger. Cast on 269 more stitches(or your amount) at end cut the CC.

ROW 1: Knit MC then at last stitch which should be BOTH the MC and CC together, knit both (keeping them together)in one stitch.
ROW 2 Knit with MC.
ROW 3 Knit with MC

[Create 6 small bobbins of your Accent Color(AC), I used about 6 ft. for each one.]

ROW 4(rs): *Knit 10 in MC knit 3 in AC* repeat 3 times, knit across until 39 stitches left *k3 in AC k10 in MC*repeat 3 times

ROW 5(ws) : Next row do same, EXCEPT PURL the AC stitches, this scarf is all garter except for the Accent Color..

ROW 6: *Knit 10 in MC SLIP with yarn in back 3 AC stitches* repeat 3x, knit across until 39 stitches *slip 3 AC with yarn in back, knit 10 MC* repeat 3x.

ROW 7: *Knit 10 in MC SLIP with yarn in front 3 AC stitches* repeat 3x, knit across until 39 stitches *slip 3 AC with yarn in front, knit 10 MC* repeat 3x.

You should have 4 garter ridges.  Continue Rows4-7 until you have 8 garter ridges (2m more repeats)

ROW A(rs): *Knit 10 in CC knit 3 in AC* repeat 3 times, knit across until 39 stitches left *k3 in AC k10 in CC*repeat 3 times

ROW B(ws) : Next row do same, EXCEPT PURL the AC stitches, this scarf is all garter except for the Accent Color..

ROW C: *Knit 10 in MC SLIP with yarn in back 3 AC stitches* repeat 3x, knit across until 39 stitches *slip 3 AC with yarn in back, knit 10 MC* repeat 3x.

ROW D: *Knit 10 in MC SLIP with yarn in front 3 AC stitches* repeat 3x, knit across until 39 stitches *slip 3 AC with yarn in front, knit 10 MC* repeat 3x

Knit rows A-D 5 times altogether, 5 CC ridges total!
Knit Rows 4-7 3 more times
Knit Rows 4 and 5

Finishing up, knit 4 rows of MC (NO ACCENT)
BIND Off with CC, Knit 2 tog through back loops and replace on left needle or any very loose cast off is fine…

The Rainbow Connection

Welcome to the best knitting season, actually any season is good for knitting, you just have to find the right project for you. I am in love with Malabrigo Rasta, great color choices, great feel, great results almost always!  I have been knitting using a slipped "rib" 
row 1 knit 1 slip 1

row 2 purl.(in the round you knit)

  I have made a scarf, blanket and now a cowl. The blanket shown in progress is made from Malabrigo Rios, a washable lovely yarn itself!  More about the blanket later....




The wide superwarm cowl is knit in the round. using 2 skeins of Rasta, shown in Arco Iris, which is Spanish for Rainbow. I happen to be a rainbow hunter. You can be too!  It needs to be sunny and raining at the same time.  If a big storm passes by you and the sunlight shines through the rain, there is a rainbow!  Here is a photo of a rainbow over KNITTY CITY, my favorite yarn store in the world located at 79th and Amsterdam in NY city.  (They just got in a bunch of Rasta, and usually stock it, call-they will send to you very kindly and quickly!)
Why is it my favorite LYS you might wonder? There are many yarn stores in Manhattan.
  1. Great Atmosphere, lots of people knitting IN the store
  2. The people(some who work there and some who knit there) are very inspiring both regarding knitting and life!
  3. Great Yarn
  4. I always learn something there, my motto, either you are knitting or you are learning(about knitting)![At work it is you are either winning or learning..... unfortunately I cant knit at work.]
Back to pattern, Get 2 skeins of Malabrigo Rasta, 1 stitch marker, a circular needle #15(10mm)
nice loose long tail cast on of 100 stitches, Join in the round
ROW 1 KNIT 1 SLIP 1(slip purlwise with yarn in FRONT)
ROW 2 KNIT
REPEAT 2 rows 
for me it was 38 rows or 19 repeats of the above 2 rows, bind off with a HUGE #19 or make sure you bind off loosely (really I mean it) Finished Dimensions 48" around 9" high
Gauge 8 stitches for 4 inches in pattern(not hugely important)

Here is a variation, use 2 different colors, alternative 1 row every time, for example I mixed Abril and Arco Iris, cast on using a slip knot with the 2 of them and the long tail with abril on the left and arco iris on the right for the cast on, then alternated abril and arco iris for each row, one for the slip row one for the knit row, I then switched the order about half way through!  you can see the horizontal line you get from slipping with yarn in front changes from the blue/purple of abril to the rainbow of the arco iris below...


Happy Knitting, this only takes about 2-4 hours to whip up!



May I please have a Spring(or Fall) Poncho?


Most loved Finished Object Already


Top Down First Version of Poncho... can be worn with front flat as shown above or with point in front
as seen below!  


This is great to leave at air conditioned office... or take to restaurant etc.. that is cold! during the summer...


Yarn: MadelineTosh Merino 3 skeins Jade 2 skeins Thoreau  

Gauge 16 stitches to 4 inches on a #9 (4.5mm)- (but you can vary this and adjust yourself)
NEED: Small length(16 inch) Circular Needle for neck and longer(40-60 inch) for bottom.....
(if you magic loop you know what to do!)
 3 Markers same 1 marker Different(for beginning of round!)

KFB=KNIT FRONT AND BACK SAME STITCH(very important!)

NECK:

First Question is how tightly do you want it to fit around your neck?  If you want it like a turtle neck, it needs to stretch to fit over your head and then hold your neck without strangling you....

Take a tape measure and measure your neck.. mine is 14 inches around for a turtle neck I made it  about 17 inches so it can fit over my big Melon of a head..(22 inches around) 

For more of a boat neck you can cast on the same that you would for a hat or for me about 19 inches around, this will stretch as you wear it,the weight of the poncho will pull it down...so make sure it is NOT too wide around neck for you!


QED: With Main Color Cast on 76 on a circular #9 
Join in the round (DONT TWIST)  
Knit until you like the neck length(for boat neck, 3 inches for turtle 6 inches) I did try it on a few times using the long needle, you can knit it onto the longer one try it on and knit it back the next row to the shorter one..



RAGLAN:  Divide into 4 equal units of 19 stitches and place your marker at every 19 stitches using the "different" marker at the beginning of round.....

INSTRUCTIONS: knit until 2 stitches BEFORE marker,  KFB K1 move marker K1 KFB

This is done every other row for entire poncho.. no matter what!

THE MARKER SHOULD ALWAYS BE BETWEEN THE 2 PLAIN KNIT STITCHES ......
(After neck is done you start the raglan increases)

Striping starts after neck as well....
last row of main color is first raglan increase,
Switch to Contrast Color
*Knit one row plain(no increases)
Knit row with raglan double increase at all 4 markers...*
repeat with main color

alternate 2 rows of 2 colors for 24-26 repeats of contrast color, 

The switch of colors should be done in the middle of raglan increases at beginning of round, otherwise you will get a line in your poncho that is pretty obvious....

Seed Stitch finishing... Keep raglan increases..between them go to seed, k1p1 for row
next row, knit the purls and purl the knits!  I did about 4 inches of seed stitch with raglan increase same as above.. (stockinette raglan)
bind off(with very large needle, I used  #13) et VOILA!






This is my second poncho.. 2/3 of the way done..  MadelineTosh  Tart and Mare.... turtle neck.. and using EPS percentage... 15% of stitches for each shoulder and 35% for the front and back...

different stripe pattern
2 rows CC
2 rows MC
2 rows CC
8 rows  MC  repeat...

will be back with more photos when done..



Spring and Fall Triangles of Gold....

As Gold keeps hitting new records I have knit a triangle using "gold" colored yarn.  This Triangle is a great piece when it is under 70 degrees and you would like something to keep your neck warm.... I love it for the spring and fall...also nice for  Air Conditioned room...

This is a classic triangle using Yarn overs in 4 places every other row....

I used Nanney Kennedy Seacolors Yarn for the Gold and Blue/Gray and Cacasde 220 for the Dark Navy contrast rows.

As it is a triangle knit from the top down gauge is less important... use a relatively large needle for the yarn so it drapes nicely, too small and needle and it will be too stiff/structured to fall nicely.

I used a #10 needle.

SET UP:
WITH MAIN COLOR
Cast on 5
Row 1 and Row 2 KNIT

WITH Contrasting Color
Row 3 K2 YO Place Marker K1 YO K2 (7st)
Row 4 Knit all stitches including the yarnovers

NOTE: On the right side, the marker tells you this is the center stitch.... yarn over before marker on  right side move the marker, knit center stitch, yarn over again.... BE VERY CAREFUL HERE if you move the center stitche it will not look good.
On wrong side just knit all stitches and yarn overs


Pattern:
WITH MAIN COLOR
Row 5(right side) K2 ,YO, KNIT until marker, YO mover marker ,K1, YO ,KNIT until last 2 stitches ,YO, K2
Row 6(wrong side) KNIT all stitches including YO's

REPEAT Rows 5 and 6 alternating Main Color and Contrasting Color....

When you are getting to about 2/3 of size you would like,  Bring in DARKER contrast color....
2 rows Main
2 rows Dark Contrast
2 rows Main
2 rows Lighter Contrast
2 rows Main
2 rows Dark Contrast
2 rows Main
2 rows Lighter Contrast
2 rows Main
2 rows Dark Contrast
1 row main
Bind off Main using 2-4 sizes larger needle for loose bind off!



Ballerina Leg Warmers...

It seems that Japan is  in all our thoughts... I hope those in the Noro factories are safe and sounds.....


Made lovely set of leg-warmers for my sweet dancer Sophie. I love Noro, unfortunately my favorite LYS does not stock it.  The good news is that I have quite a reasonable stash from olden days.
Used about 1 skein of Kureyon(crayon in Japanese)
and less than 1  skein of  Kocheran(delicious furry yarn)
These two yarns are different thickness however they knit  up  fine in the ribbing...

I used a US6 4mm needle cast on 36  stitches, knit2 purl 1 ribbing all around until long enough to cover ankle to knee. I  chose to cast on the same point on the Bright Kureyon,on the more neutral Kocheran, ignored where the colors fell.

Ruffle Shawl with a Dog and Daughter....



This is one of my favorite projects... Started to knit a shawl and wanted some ruffle and here they are.. will do more in sock yarn..The top one is  knit with Malabrigo Worsted (Deja Vu)and the striped one is MadelineTosh Merino*on a 10(2 sizes larger than I normally would knit the yarn with) to make it squishy. The larger needle also makes it hang nicely.
I like to wear it with ruffle in front, like a scarf(See dog and daughter photo below)

*Cobalt and Ginger for Tosh.

Gauge not really important(4/inch)
Cast on 5
Row 1 :knit
Row 2 : Knit
(SET UP) Row 3:k2 Yarn Over Place marker Knit 1 yarn over knit 2
Row 4 and all even rows:
k2,YO,knit to marker,YO, slip marker,k1,YO, slip to last 2 stitches,YO, K2
All ODD rows just knit
you are creating a triangle….
when you have 147 stitches… about 36 garter ridges you are starting to create ruffle
Ruffle Row 1:k1 kfb
ruffle Row 2(and all even rows): purl back
Ruffle Row 3,5,7: repeat row 1
stitch count end (it doesnt really matter )
row 1: 220
row 3: 330
row 5: 496
row 7: 744
row 8 9 10 11 stockinette
8 purl row
9 knit row
10 purl row
11 knit row
bind off LOOSELY!
for striped version, I did ruffle in one color until last row and bind off in Contrasting Color!


Vacation Memory of fabulous yarn store in the shadow of the Duomo, felted mittens

The 3 mile hike I have been taking each morning through Central Park on the way to school with my son has made me think about mittens.  Not just regular knitted that the wind can easily sneak into, but Irish Fisherman, super duper warm 100% wool felted mittens.  I had made a pair a few years ago.  They are very pretty but too big, they look like Oven mitts(see 2nd photo at top.)  Now I have felted quite a few things since then and the basic rule is they shrink about 30% in length(top to bottom knitting) and 20% in width( side to side).  You do need to peek into the top loaded super hot water and pull them out every 5 or so minutes to make sure you dont get a baby sized treat......I was ready to make a pair of mittens or six that fit me or my intended wearer!  I was off to Italy for winter break and I found the felting wool that would make great warm memory mittens.  Mittens to remind me of the winter vacation of 2010!

Campolmi Roberto Filati  


The first time I walked past the unsigned street I didnt see any stores on it and kept walking with my map in hand.  I finally came around the other side of the very very long block and there it was a few hundred yards(or meters) from the Duomo, Via Portinari 19 in Florence Italy.  It is a real local treasure.  You enter through a room piled high with 400 yard skeins sitting in sale bins. Next you walk by Modern-George Jetson style 8 foot tall yarn winders into the real yarn room.  . In a large room the yarn was neatly stacked from the floor to the ceiling on large shelves. There was a small wooden display box on the wall about 2 feet square where one sample ball of each kind of yarn was available to fondle.....at the counter they had color books with many choices (up to 90)for each yarn and you requested yarn from a lady behind the counter as if it were deli meat,by color and quantity.  They were very kind to a English speaking American, me. They make their own yarns and carry great wools I hadn't seen anywhere, they carry a wide range of fibers, linen, hemp, cotton silk and manmade fibers as well.

            Here is the link to their website and the history of this local treasure use google translate for english 

                                                             
    The yarn is superchunky 100% wool as I wanted dense warm mittens I used a #9 US needle. In order to have a nice narrow shape at the bottom without switching needles I cast on fewer stitches for the cuff and then added some after the cuff was done...

Directions for large handed woman....size 8 gloves
My Gauge Using 9 needles 6.5 stitches for 2 inches


Cast on 34 on#9 put onto 3 needles 
Knit 4 rows 
Add 3 stitches one beginning of each needle 
Knit one more row 
Switch to cc 
K1slip1around 
Knit 2rows with cc
Pick up main color up 
K1slip 1 around
Knit3rows around
Knit 2 rows each Color alternately 
Start gusset after 3rd round of cc. Work until 17 stitches on thumb gusset
Hand:
continue to knit 2 rows main 2 rows CC
after 9th hand set  of cc 
Decrease for top of mitten


Knit 4 k2 tog 
Knit row 
K3 k2tog 
Knit row 
K2tog around 
Knit around 
sew up
Thumb 
pick up two stitches at top of thumb from mitten 
Do seven sets of stripes 
Start decreases 
Knit one knit2tog 
Knit Round
Knit one k2tog 
Knit round 
K2tog Round 
Knit round 
Sew in tightly and tie a knot..you can cut out the knot later...otherwise you might get a hole at the end of the thumb or top of the mitten!

Final mitten length
14 inches long before felting 
10 inches after
Take plain piece of NON felting yarn in plain (non running dye)color and string around wrist and pull tightly to avoid the spread of the opening you get while felting, cut off after felting...

Throw into hot hot water washing machine( I toss a kettle of boiling water into my machine to make sure the water is hot enough).  keep checking mitten size, I can manually extend my wash cycles and do so as needed.  These took 2 wash cycles.  I also add a nicely scented baby soap(Dreft) to the wash to get a sweeter smell than wet wool gives you alone!  Once the right size  spin the water out of the machine (and mittens) et VOILA! lovely felted warm mittens.

Threads of Resistance : Stately InfoQuilt November 9 2016 Midnight: phone call from our 22 year old daughter distraught, Unit...